Hillary Clinton Former Secretary of State said that Vladimir Putin “was very sexist” towards her when they met. She spoke of several “helpful” interactions she had with him before he’d “manspreading” for the press. Clinton pointed to a 2012 comment she made as a basis for Putin’s involvement in the 2016 election.
Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in a recent interview said that Russian President Vladimir Putin was “very sexist” towards her, while also noting that they would sometimes have “helpful” interactions away from the media.
During a conversation with The Financial Times, Clinton spoke of her diplomatic efforts with the man that she once said “doesn’t have a soul” and who launched the ongoing invasion of Ukraine — remarking on his sexism during her tenure as secretary of state.
“He was very sexist towards me,” she said of Putin, who once said it is “better not to argue with women” after Clinton lamented the difficulties in forging a relationship with him.
She continued: “We had some interesting, even helpful, interactions in private and then the press would be invited in and he would say something insulting about America. He would then manspread for effect.”
Clinton also said she felt Putin’s “influence campaign” regarding the 2016 US presidential election — which she lost to former President Donald Trump — was rooted in a 2012 statement where she advocated for Russians who were protesting against his return to power in Moscow.
The former secretary of state then said that Putin’s route to any sort of victory in Ukraine would be tied to a Trump victory in 2024 — pointing to the former US president’s disdain for the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO).
“If Trump had won in 2020 he would have pulled out of NATO — I have no doubt about that,” she told the Financial Times, referring to the international alliance composed of 30 countries.
Former National Security Advisor John Bolton said earlier this year that Putin was standing by for Trump to remove the United States from NATO had he secured a second term in office.
“I thought he put his foot over it, but at least he didn’t withdraw then,” Bolton said during a talk hosted by The Washington Post in which he pointed out Trump’s 2018 suggestion to leave the alliance. “In a second Trump term, I think he may well have withdrawn from NATO. And I think Putin was waiting for that.”
Putin in the past has opposed Ukraine’s efforts to become part of NATO, with the leader seeing its membership as a threat to Russia.